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Let’s Not Make a Deal (NYT)
Paul Krugman argues that after a decisive victory, President Obama shouldn’t give in to the House GOP’s “heads we win, tails you lose” strategy on the fiscal cliff and fall back into the role of economic hostage negotiator as he’s done so many times before.
The coming debt battle (Salon)
James K. Galbraith writes that despite growing Beltway pressure to slash Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid, they’re programs that can always meet their demands as long as we want them to, meaning the only thing bankrupt is their opponents’ arguments.
Climate change, not the national debt, is the legacy we should care about (Guardian)
Dean Baker argues that deficit hawks who claim they’re just trying to save their grandchildren from the terrible burden of paying interest on government debt might want to step back and look at some bigger questions, like whether Earth will be habitable for them.
Debt Ceiling Complicates a Tax Shift (NYT)
Annie Lowrey notes that while President Obama has leverage in the upcoming fiscal cliff fight thanks to the expiration of the Bush tax cuts, congressional Republicans still have a card up their sleeve, and as usual, it’s labeled “Threaten to Destroy Our Credit Rating.”
What do voters really think about the economy? Three lessons from exit polls (WaPo)
Neil Irwin writes that exit polls reflect an electorate that believes Obama is still trying to clean up George W. Bush’s mess and isn’t particularly concerned about the size of the deficit, but would really like to be earning enough money to pay for gas and groceries.
Obama’s Second Chance to Be Historic (Bloomberg)
David Kennedy argues that after shattering America’s biggest racial barrier, Obama’s next task is to convince the GOP to stop gaming a system designed to ensure cooperation in order to achieve the opposite. Then he can challenge Usain Bolt to a foot race.
The You’re-on-Your-Own Society (The Nation)
Katha Pollitt writes that the election results suggest that Americans, whether they were convinced by the president or by Hurricane Sandy, have rejected the right-wing notion that the worst burden we can suffer is an obligation to help relieve someone else’s.
The Importance of Elizabeth Warren (NYT)
Simon Johnson writes that having Elizabeth Warren headed for the Senate is great news not just for progressives but for anyone who favors transparency and accountability for banks, even if they need to pretend to hate her because of the D next to her name.
Organized labor delivered for the Dems, but what will it get in return? (Washington Monthly)
Kathleen Geier notes that labor unions formed a crucial part of Obama’s winning coalition and provided him with all-important ground troops, but with the House in the GOP’s hands, the best he may have to offer them in exchange for their votes is his vetoes.
Dave Siegel Hasn’t Fired Anyone Yet (Businessweek)
Time-share company owner Dave Siegel was just one of the many CEOs who threatened their employees with vague but grave consequences if President Obama were to be reelected, and so far, those consequences include an across-the-board raise.